Delhi will start unlocking slowly from Monday as only 1,100 fresh cases of Covid-19 have been reported in the past 24 hours and the positivity rate has come down to 1.5 per cent, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said on Friday.
"This is the time to unlock lest people escape coronavirus only to die of hunger," Mr Kejriwal said, “We have to follow a balanced approach of controlling coronavirus as well as reviving economic activity.”
He had announced a lockdown on April 19 after the daily count in new Covid-19 cases in the national capital had soared past the one lakh mark for five consecutive days.
"Today there was a meeting with the disaster management authority. To avoid losing the advantage gained in the past month, everyone is of the opinion that we must open slowly, slowly. There has to be some balance," Kejriwal said.
He said that in the unlocking process, the government has to take care of the lowest strata first, which includes daily wagers, labourers, and migrant workers who come to Delhi from far off areas to earn their livelihood. These people usually work in the construction sector and in factories, he observed.
Beginning Monday, productive units will be allowed to function in industrial areas within the confines of their manufacturing premises. Workers will also be allowed to carry out construction activities in specified compounds.
"Every week, based on suggestions from citizens and expert opinion, we will keep opening up progressively. If the rate of infection increases again, we will put the unlocking on hold. So everyone must maintain caution," the chief minister said.